The Importance of Hobbies

Nowadays, if you had to ask someone what they set aside to do for fun, they may not have an answer for you. Switching on the TV or scrolling through our phones to unwind has become the norm. Even though mindless downtime can be healthy (I get lost in the web for hours, too!) downtime that inspires, energizes and develops you as a person is a no-brainer when spending your free time. It’s no surprise that the rising rates of screen-time have been accompanied by rising rates of depression, too.

It’s simple friends: people are not encouraged to do what they love and it shows!

Hobbies and Our Well-Being


Hobbies are non-occupational activities (meaning that you don’t do them for work) that are done FOR FUN. They’re meant to des-stress and inspire you.

Doing activities simply for the fun of it is not considered important and at RITES, we disagree. Imagine spending weeks doing what you have to do (school, chores and other obligations you may have) only to keep on doing what you have to do. This means you don’t have time for fun!

Imagine that you have set aside time to do what you love. It could be painting, writing, swimming, hiking or playing a sport. Your joy becomes a centre point to your life. You have friends, connections and ideas to think about in your free time. You’ve created happy memories and because you are learning about yourself in a free and open space, you’re seeing all the good things you can do if you set your mind to it. How cool?

“But I’m Not Good at Anything”

Guess what? Hobbies are for learning and for fun. Although being ‘good’ at something is rewarding, ask yourself if you want to be good at something for the recognition of it, or because you enjoy the process of learning and getting better along the way.

Remember that often, those who do excel do it for reasons other than simply winning. They do it for the love of the sport, for knowing that they did their best, for overcoming their own shortcomings and for expressing their own unique talent.

The Need to be Perfect

As we grow up, we’re told to focus on ‘more important’ things unless we’re ‘good’ at what we’re doing. This is damaging because we can’t be good at everything! Talent takes practice, perseverance and time. Wanting to be perfect makes us afraid to be bad at things. But nobody is born an expert!

It’s All in the Mind

At school, we’re unwittingly taught what is known as the Fixed Mindset. As a result, we become afraid of getting things ‘wrong.’

People with a Fixed Mindset believe that “they are just bad at directions” or that somebody has a ‘talent’ for cooking or for a particular sport.

A person with a Growth Mindset views talent as something that is learned through practice, accepting that there are different stages to overcome before you can become an ‘expert.’

You’ll need to develop a Growth Mindset if you want to begin a new hobby!

Benefits of Hobbies
  • Make you more interesting.
  • Can help you make friends. You will find people with similar interests to you and will have something to speak about with passion.
  • It’s a great way to connect with friends if new relationships intimidate you.
  • Filling up your time with and meaningful activities allows for a happier life.
  • A great outlet for stress. A happier you = a more effective you.
  • Makes your smarter.
  • Builds confidence and makes you more self-aware.
Hobbies to Try
  • Sports at your school
  • Art lessons (you can even teach yourself these skills on Youtube)
  • Learning an instrument
  • Drama / Acting
  • Cooking
  • Hiking and outdoors activities
  • Surfing etc
  • Watching documentaries
  • Volunteering
  • Collaging / doodling

It may take a few tries to find what really makes you tick. Changing hobbies is okay because you can take along the skills with you.

For example, playing team sports can help you dance, because you are aware of your body and what it means to physically challenge yourself. Art lessons can teach you about planning and patience, which you can apply to other areas of your life such as school projects, writing and in other creative outlets like photography.

Let us know what keeps you busy in the comments below!

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